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Will Rogers

Built in 1955; last BPSD classes in 1986 except for 2006-2010 Early Childhood Center; now Technology Services & remainder rented to PTI

Will Rogers was built for $149,329 in 1955 to serve the new Pennington Hills development in east Bartlesville at 4620 E. Frank Phillips Boulevard. The next year a $194,510 addition was made. In 1960 $35,663 was spent on a second addition, and a final addition in 1963 cost $32,512. The elementary school served up to sixth grade until 1962 when the 5th and 6th graders were transferred.

The school was closed in 1986 and the next year the district's curriculum office and teacher center were moved there. The building housed the regional Professional Development Center until that function ceased in the summer of 2003; the Teacher Center closed in the summer of 2004. For several years much of the north part of the building was Technology Services while the former gym and south part were used for professional development meetings. The special needs pre-school classes formerly housed at Southview moved here in 2003.

Twenty years after closing as a school, the building was renovated and re-activated temporarily as an Early Childhood Center in 2006 in response to new housing developments in the Ranch Heights,Wayside, and Wilson areas. It served Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten classes for Ranch Heights and Wayside areas and Pre-Kindergarten classes for the Wilson service area. After the expansion of the neighborhood schools was completed in the summer of 2011, Will Rogers was slated to close. But statewide budget cuts from a severe recession led to the school being closed a year early in the summer of 2010 to reduce district overhead and administrative costs.

In the summer of 2011 various district services were relocated from McKinley to Will Rogers: Technology Services, Psychological Services, Adult Education, Operation Eagle, Child Nutrition, Even Start, Parents as Teachers, Homeless Services, and Safe and Healthy Schools. Technology Services provides information technology support throughout the school system. Adult Education offers services for undereducated adults, such as basic education, adult special education, GED testing, and English as a Second Language. Operation Eagle is the district's Title VII Indian Education program, with dance classes, arts and crafts, and monthly parent meetings.

All services except Technology Services were relocated to the high school or Madison campuses in the summer of 2016. 

In 2017 Technology Services used a set of rooms at the northeast corner of the campus. The remainder of the campus will be leased to the Paths to Independence private school for children with autism.

Click images to enlarge them.

Will Rogers School being constructed

Will Rogers School being constructed

Main Entrance in 1955

Main Entrance in 1955

Main Entrance in the 1980s

Main Entrance in the 1980s

Will Rogers Sign in 2009

Will Rogers Sign in 2009

Will Rogers in 2011

Will Rogers in 2011